Firework licensing and controls

There are legal controls which cover the storage, sale and display of fireworks.

If you have wholesale or retail premises that store or sell fireworks of up to two tonnes (net explosives content) you must be licensed by Newport City Council.

If you want to store more than two tonnes of explosives you should apply to the Health and Safety Executive for a licence.

It is your responsibility to be aware of and comply with the Explosives Regulations 2014

Download the HSE Explosives Regulations 2014 Guidance on Regulations - fireworks in retail premises (pdf)

1. Selling fireworks during festive periods only?

If you're selling fireworks during the following festive periods only, you will need a festive period fireworks storage licence - there is a fee to pay and you will also need to submit plans (see details below).

  • Bonfire Night - from 15 October to 10 November
  • Boxing Day and New Year - from 26 to 31 December
  • Chinese New Year - on the first day and the three days immediately before
  • Diwali - on the first day and the three days immediately before

It is illegal to sell fireworks outside of these festive periods.

You may apply and pay for a new festive period fireworks storage licence or to renew an existing licence online.

If you are applying for a new licence or are unsure what you need please email us at trading.standards@newport.gov.uk before applying.

Apply for a festive period fireworks licence

You will also need to supply these documents - plans of your premises, its location and where the fireworks will be stored - with your application:

a) a plan showing the location of the site in relation to named roads, hamlets, villages etc. If the site does not have a postal address this should be a minmum scale of 1:25000

b) if the store is subject to separation distances you will also need to provide an OS site plan showing the location of the store and distances to neighbouring buildings. The plan should also show any areas where you intend to process or manufacture explosives where a licence for those activities is not required under regulation 6 of ER2014. The scale will depend on the separation distance. For a distance of up to 200 metres, a 1:1250 would be required while greater distance would require a 1:12500 or even a Super Plan. Where this plan clearly identifies the location of the site in relation to its surroundings it can be substituted for the plan detailed in (a) above.

(c) if you intend to store or display more than 12.5kg of fireworks on a shop floor you will need to submit a plan of the sales area.

(d) if you intend to store, process or manufacture explosives within a building that is also used for other purposes you should include a floor plan showing the places within the building where you intend storing, processing or manufacturing the explosives.  

2. Selling fireworks all year?

If you want to sell fireworks all year, you will need the festive period fireworks storage licence above as well as a special all-year licence which costs £500 per year.

Please email trading.standards@newport.gov.uk to apply for an all-year licence.

Download the HSE Explosives Regulations 2014 Guidance on Regulations - fireworks in retail premises (pdf)

Sale of fireworks

  • Fireworks must not be hawked, sold or exposed for sale upon a street or a public place and must not be sold to any child under the age of 18 years
  • The name and address and safety instructions on any firework when received from the factory must not be removed, obliterated or altered before sale
  • Only fireworks which comply with BS7114 may be sold
  • It is an offence for someone under 18 to possess fireworks in a public place

Offences

It is an offence to:

  • keep explosives on unregistered premises
  • to exceed the permitted quantities for storage
  • to contravene the methods of storage
  • to sell fireworks to any child under the age of 18
  • to sell fireworks without a licence
  • to sell fireworks at times of year not covered by your licence

If an offence is committed a court may impose a penalty of £5000 or more and may order the explosives to be given up.

Heavy penalties may also be imposed for other offences.

If asked, the occupier of any registered premises must show to any authorised officer all explosives on the premises. 

Newport City Council trading standards service has prepared this guidance to help businesses, it is not an authoritative interpretation of the law.

Contact

For further advice contact Newport City Council and ask for the trading standards team.

Read about registered firework displays